Texas Bill Would Put Guns on Campus

Seven other states pursuing similar legislation
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 4, 2011 7:11 AM CST
Crime scene barrier tape is seen on the University of Texas campus near the scene where a gunman opened fire then killed himself inside a library, Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2010 in Austin.   (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

(Newser) – Will arming students prevent school shootings? A group of Texas Republicans think so—they’re pushing a bill that would remove college campuses from the list of gun-free zones, NPR reports. “Right now, so-called gun-free zones, I think, ought to be renamed Victims Zones,” one state senator says. “I just don’t want to see a repeat in Texas of what happened at Virginia Tech."

Seven other states are considering similar legislation—which would allow students who are at least 21 to carry concealed handguns to class, or in their dorm, for instance—but in Texas its odds are especially strong, because Republicans have gained a legislative supermajority. On college campuses, opinions are mixed. The president of the University of Texas at Austin—which suffered a shooting scare in September—opposes the bill. “Friday night comes on our campus once a week,” he says. "Mixing youth, handguns and partying is, in my view, a mix for serious concerns about safety on campus." But some students disagree; at least one drove to the state capitol to lobby for the bill.

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